Bracken Fern (Pteridium aquilinum var. pseudocaudatum)

Educational Story

Bracken Fern, Pteridium aquilinum var. pseudocaudatum, is a native perennial fern that reproduces through spores. Pteridium aquilinum means “like wings of an eagle”, because of the appearance of its fronds. It is the most widespread and easily recognized species of fern. The aquilinum species is native to Europe, where it grows larger than in the United States. Their stems form horizontal, underground rhizomes, allowing them to grow quickly and aggressively. You probably do not want to plant these in your garden unless you confine them to a specific area and control their spread.

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Gardening Facts

Scientific Name: Pteridium aquilinum var. pseudo caudatum
Common Name: Bracken Fern, Eagle Fern
Description of facts and concepts: Grows in dry shady areas under pine forests. Spreads quickly and aggressively
Seed or division information: Root Division; divide roots while plant is dormant
Date of flower’s bloom (Month and week): N/A
Ecoregion: Mesic Flatwoods
Color of Flower: N/A
Height: Up to 3 feet
Spread: 3 to 5 feet
Family: Dennstaedtiaceae
Soil Type: Base to Acidic Acid (pH<6.8)
Soil: Dry to Wet Dry
Light: Sun to Shade Part Shade
Zone 5A-11B